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thApparently I can’t read a calendar. Last week I offered a 40 percent discount on my Write A Blog People Will Read online course. At the end of the post I noted that the discount was good until “11:59 PDT Wednesday, April 8.”

Swell, except that April 8 is a Friday. Ooops.

Those who are still mulling it over (and I’ve heard from a couple of you) now have two extra days to make your decision. If you’re on the fence, feel free to e-mail me at SurvivingAndThriving (at) live (dot) com with any qualms.

For example, one reader wrote to ask how much experience was needed for the course. Although she does a lot of writing for her job it’s a very different type of scribbling. Thus she wondered if the course would be “too advanced” for someone who was new to blogging.

I responded with a note plus a couple of sample chapters so she could get an idea of what the course holds. If you, too, have specific questions (how can I know whether I’ll find enough ideas, what if I’m not sure there’s time in my life to maintain a blog, et al.), send them along and I’ll respond with advice*** and a course sample that helps address that question.

In other news:

 


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thGiven that my most recent giveaway had 243 entries, I’m guessing you guys like to win gift cards. That’s why you should all head over to my daughter’s website, because she’s giving away a $100 Amazon gift card.

Well, she isn’t. DollarDig is. Abby’s just the host. The cash-back site is sponsoring the giveaway of the gift card and will also donate $100 to a charity of the readers’ choice (and 10 T-shirts in addition to the Amazon scrip).

That’s not the only site you should visit, though.

 


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thThis year I’m not taking the advice from my friend Liz Weston, who says you should treat yourself with 10 percent of any windfall and then put the rest where it will do some good. My 2016 income tax refund will be deposited directly into savings and there it will stay.

Some people believe that tax refund = an interest-free loan to Uncle Sam. Personally, I think a refund makes sense for those who don’t have the discipline to save. Let me define that further: It makes sense if they use the refunds in smart ways.

Here’s an example of a not-smart way: Friends of my daughter’s planned to buy a race-car bed for their toddler son. This despite the fact that she didn’t work and his profession (drywaller) left him unemployed off and on.

A race-car bed. Sure, it would be fun to give that to your kid. You know what else is fun? Not having to worry about how you’ll feed him during during periods of little to no work.

 


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th-2A whole lot of people approach retirement with a serious misconception about credit scoring.

A recent study from TransUnion indicates that almost half of Baby Boomers think that credit scores don’t matter as much after age 70.

Guess what? They do.

Generally speaking, seniors aren’t applying for mortgages or refinancing existing ones in their eighth decades. But a low credit score affects insurance premiums, auto loan interest rates and, maybe, getting accepted for long-term care.

Folks edging toward retirement with moderate to poor credit – or no credit – need to think about how they might handle any financial surprises. Even if you think that Social Security plus pension/retirement plan will let you live a cash-only lifestyle, you’re better off owning and using credit cards.

Life does tend to throw curveballs. Suppose during retirement…

 


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th-3A recent freelance experience suffused with mega-micromanagement left me teeth-grindingly irritated and wondering, “What if I just quit?”

Pipe dream, at least for now. I’m too young to collect Social Security and not quite far enough along in my personal retirement savings to stop contributing.

It’s not that I don’t like what I do. Writing is as natural as respiration. Even if I quit writing full-time I’d likely freelance here and there. Lately, though, I’m viewing time as more important than money, and resenting the hours spent on non-life-enriching stuff.

We now interrupt our regular broadcast to check our privilege: Plenty of people in the world don’t have the freedom even to consider such a choice. They work until they die, and with their last breaths apologize for not contributing more to the family and for costing so much money to bury.

I know that I am in a pretty benevolent place: I can work from home, the job is interesting and lets me help people, and I get to see DF for lunch every day.

Which brings me to the main reason I want to retire.

 


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